Sunday, April 10, 2011

April 10, 2011

Last weekend we learned Charlotte makes a very cute chicken. We had fun at the Minnesota Zoo with some friends and their daughter who is just one month older than Charlotte. It was striking to see how much better their daughter walked than Charlotte - she looked like an old pro while Charlotte is still a bit stiff-legged.

We went to the zoo to see the baby farm animals. Charlotte was a bit hesitant with the goats but did feed one a pellet after I shoved her hand toward its mouth. :) She pet the baby pig without any prompting, but baby pigs are pretty adorable.

I can almost say Charlotte's vomiting has subsided! Over the past week she threw up at most once/day. On a related note, her eating has increased slightly. She is not interested in taking food on the spoon but she loves feeding herself. She has learned how to eat puffs, bits of banana, and small pieces of pasta. Tonight she chewed on an apple but I'm not sure how much she actually ate. She also drinks out of her sippy cup pretty well (though her favorite thing to do with her sippy cup is drip the water all over herself and the floor). She has her first feeding clinic appointment since our move this Thursday, and we're looking forward to some new insight.

She has become very interested in her feeding tubes, and regularly wants to chew on an extension set. I'm worried about the plastic breaking off in her mouth so pulled out a nuk last night and she even chewed on that. When we left CHW the nurses gave us a handful of nuks that she never used, so I'm glad she's finally, at age 20 months, finding a use for them!

Charlotte's silk pink elephant pajamas were inherited from her cousin Genevieve. They're 18 month size but still too big for her. We let her wear them to bed one night last week because she loves feeling the fabric, but she had a tough time walking around in them. The leg fabric kept getting under her feet and causing her to slip.

Today I took her to the park and she loved it. Last summer she was very timid and did not want to do much but play with sand box toys. Today she crawled through a tunnel, took multiple trips down the slide, and even smiled on the swing. It was hard to get her to leave!

She's gaining weight! Last Sunday she weighed 20 lbs 6 oz and today at 20 months she's up to 20 lbs 8 oz.

The order of this blog post is a bit chaotic, but on Saturday we went down to the Gopher's TCF Bank Stadium to watch Grandma and Grandpa Russell finish Goldy's Run. It was our first trip to the stadium and very fun to walk around on the field. It was especially eventful because we met a couple who reads Charlotte's blog and recognized her from the pictures we post here. Which brings me to something I've been thinking about lately...

We started this blog while Charlotte was in the hospital as a way to keep our family and friends informed about how she was doing. At the time we assumed the day we brought her home would be a clear break from the NICU, she would be a completely healthy, normal baby, and we'd have no use for the blog. Instead we brought her home on a feeding tube and have kept on blogging to keep those who choose to follow updated on how she's doing.

Another reason we maintain the blog is because we hope it might help other parents who have a preemie or a baby on a g-tube. We've read many blogs about other kids/families who've had similar experiences as us. Their blogs are comforting to read and have helped me to stay optimistic and hopeful.

Lately I'm feeling conflicted. Part of me wants to keep the blog going until she eats, but we don't know when that will be. Another part of me worries about who is reading the blog and if posting her pictures in such a public space could put her in danger. But the couple we met on Saturday were very nice and we appreciated that they continued to show interest in Charlotte's progress even after all these months. Maybe I'm being paranoid...I do watch a lot of Law and Order SVU. Thoughts anyone?

10 comments on "April 10, 2011"

Gary and Mary on April 11, 2011 at 6:54 AM said...

Katie, I can understand your concern regarding the blog. Since we can't see Charlotte any more, I love keeping up with her progress through the blog! It sounds like she is on her road to improving. She is such a doll! Wish you guys the best and hope to see Charlotte's blog a little longer! Hope your spring is a good one and take care! Mary

Andi on April 11, 2011 at 7:24 AM said...

Keep it going!!! Even after she's done with the tube :)

Anonymous said...

Hey, Katie -

I understand your concerns, but I know people who have a password-protected blog - that way you know who is in it and who's not? I think that one is a WordPress blog (I'm not sure if this service will allow a pw-protection or not) but it might be something you want to look into?


Laura on April 11, 2011 at 11:30 PM said...

I love reading about Charlotte, and I encourage you to keep writing, even after she gets healthier and is off the feeding tube. It's so fun to read about wonderful moments like your time at the zoo and all that and I feel a small triumph for you and for Charlotte each time she does better.

And to follow up on Amy's suggestion, you can make blogger password-protected, invite only too if you want to switch your current blog to that. Just an FYI.

I hope to see you all soon!


lisadlind on April 12, 2011 at 2:06 PM said...


Even though we've never met Charlotte, (hopefully sometime soon!)through reading your blog I feel like we have. It's nice to be able to keep up with you in this way and so fun to see Charlotte progress. Thanks for doing the blog!

Lisa Weispfenning

britta on April 14, 2011 at 8:57 PM said...

I love keeping up with Charlotte (and her parents) via this blog. I vote to keep it going, even if you lock it down a bit more. I like the idea that you have a great record of all of her firsts. I think one day she'll really like going back to read all about herself.

Anonymous said...

I understand your fear but I do like to read how Charlotte is doing and keeping my mom and Katie update on your guys progress and adventures. We can't beleive how well Charlotte and you guys are doing. whatever you choose works for me but if you choose to shut the blog down lets try to find an alternative to keep in touch.

Matt Russell

Lindsay on April 16, 2011 at 7:52 AM said...

Keep blogging Katie! I've had these worries too...but i don't think the risk is that big.

Loved the pigtails in the last post. She looks like such a big girl! Also glad to hear about the eating successes and less puking!

Anonymous said...

HI Katie, Patrick and Charlotte,

I love keeping in touch this way, can understand your concern but I hope you will keep it going.

Duluth wants to hear about your family, charlottes progress and Ptricks racing.

Love, Leona Krieg

PS Marathon housing still has rooms available at UMD. Smiley Emotion

Mrs. Trewartha on May 4, 2011 at 10:28 PM said...

Please keep blogging.



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